3 R’s-Relevance, Research and Readability
Relevance….Focus on what the employer is looking for, not on yourself, your work history and skills. An excellent resume is not about giving the employer every detail, it is a marketing piece to intrigue, a marketing piece that positions you, brands you as the ideal candidate by giving details that will be most relevant to the employer. You need to determine which of your qualifications, skills and experience are the best match for the employer, and highlight them in your resume.
Prioritize the information on your resume so that the most important or relevant skills and achievements stand out on the first page. You want a resume that will position you, brand you properly at first glance. The reader should not have to spend a great deal of time, other than a few seconds looking at your resume to know why you will be of benefit to the organization.
Research: You must match the required job qualifications, because in a candidate rich environment a machine or an employee who is not necessarily invested in finding the right candidate is scanning resumes, eliminating candidates. Scrutinize the job posting, make sure that you meet the requirements and that your resume mirrors key words in not only the job posting but in the organization’s mission or vision statement.
Research the company! Go to their website, use online tools to find out about key players, new mergers and acquisitions. Gain an understanding of the organization, its culture, values, goals and objectives. Pay attention to the words being used, and mirror them in your resume and marketing materials.
Readability: This is job search for dummies, and YOU are not the dummy. The marketplace is highly competitive, and your resume is a tool to help you get through the elimination process, to the first telephone and then face to face interview. It must be executive looking, simple, clean with no spelling errors. Make sure your contact information is on every page, and that there is enough white space to draw the eye of the reader to important key strengths, skills and experience. Use bullet points, key words and action statements. Prioritize information on the first page of your resume so that skills and achievements that will be relevant to the job posting and the employer stand out.
The first page of your resume should highlight key strengths, skills and achievements that speak that stand out at a glance. Page two,a chronological history of your career and brief synopsis of education.(dates or no dates in education background depending on whether ageism is a factor)
- How to Use Keywords in a Resume (vickandassociates.com)
- Cover Letters for Over Forty Job Seekers (boomersnextstep.com)
- Things Not to Include on a Resume (boomersnextstep.com)